Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Mousehole. Cloverdale's Smoregasboard of Smells

Joseppi Fratini opened The Mousehole on Dibley Lane in Coverdale in 1964. The business specializes in everything related to fine cheeses. If you need something exotic, you’ll find it there. One thing you won’t find in The Mousehole is beautiful smells if your definition of beautiful is blossom fragrances. This small shop’s cheeses carry smells ranging from cheddar neutral to the dirty socks smell of Limburger. Some would argue that English Costwold should be ranked next to Limburger. Of course if you want a nose curdling foul smelling cheese with the heaviest hit to the pocket book then you’ll want Joseppi’s special cheese ‘Fontina Val d’Aosta DOP. This vomit inducer sells for $558 for a 20 pound wheel.

The Fratini grandchildren help in the shop at busy times, especially holidays when fine cooking is expected. From the time they started eating solid food they learned to savor the taste of fine cheeses and became experts. The grandchildren use their expertise by giving tours and tastings to school field trips. The best part of the field trip is the Iron Nose Championship. The students line up with noses ready. The grandchildren prepare various cheeses for smelling. Each cheese is held under the student's noses for a sniff. The child advances to the next round if he displays no reaction to the smell. The competition continues until one student is left standing. That child is proclaimed "Iron Nose" and given a gift certificate for a take home macaroni and cheese dinner from The Mousehole's small, one table cafe.

In addition to the luxury cheeses, The Mousehole serves the best Macaroni and Cheese in the Confederacy using the very cheeses sold in the refrigerated display cases. A reservation is required for the one table in the back of the shop. Think ahead, it books out months in advance, and remember your reservation is for twenty minutes only. Mrs. Maria Fratini's marconi and cheese is the one and only item on the menu . She serves a different type of Marconi and cheese each day and Saturday is her surprise day. You don’t know what you’ll get until she serves it piping hot to the table.
Last Saturday's Special at The Moushole's Table for Four

Spending time in Cloverdale’s ‘The Mousehole’ is an adventure of sight, smell, and taste. It is a must for any visitor to Cloverdale seeking a truly off the beaten path gastric adventure. At the Mousehole you get fine cheeses, good laughs, and a delicious portion of Marconi and cheese. Along with the atmosphere of an old world cheese shop you can rub shoulders with Cloverdale’s finest cooks searching for just the right taste to make a special evening meal for family and friends.

The Mousehole's Single Table Cafe Serving Mrs. Fratini's Specials

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Birthday Frights by Albert Myer

Albert Myer (Scar)

By day Albert Myer is a Senior at Cloverdale’s Comprehensive School. The Head Master refers to him as 'dark with a twist of bizarre'. The students describe him as 'deep'. On weekends and evenings Albert is known as Scar, an artist extraordinaire. He entertains at children’s birthday parties with his own unique brand of face painting.

Scar’s birthday package includes a unique face painting for each party guest, a macabre birthday cake which looks like it came straight from the kitchen of the Adam’s Family, black balloons and skeleton ice cream sticks. Each Scar party ends with the telling of a gruesome tale guaranteed to put the party guests in their parent’s beds for the next fortnight.

One of Scar's Masterpieces at Little Ronnie Applegate's tenth birthday party

Albert seems to have found a niche in the birthday party market. He is perfect for the odd child that finds cute stuffed animals and pin the tale on the donkey horrifyingly grotesque. And according to his weekly schedule there are many of them in our community.

What do Cloverdale’s parents think of Albert Myer? Surprisingly, most parent’s surveyed approve of his unique approach to the traditional ‘birthday party’. Kids seem to love it, and as long as each child tells his or her parents that they loved the party, parents prefer not to know any further details. Willful ignorance is the creed many of today’s parents live by. They don’t have the time or the stamina to worry about their job, the bills, and their children. Truly something must give, and when their choice is correct supervision of their children - Scar steps in to take advantage of the vacuum by becoming the Dark Pied Piper of Cloverdale.

To book a Scar event call Filmore 3542.

Monday, May 11, 2009

The Sunflower Girls of Cloverdale in the Shire.

I was browsing the records section of Donaldson’s Department Store here in Cloverdale last weekend and came across this old vinyl record of The Sunflower Girls. Wow does this take me back! This singing group was the most popular attraction in the Shire back in the 1980’s. They filled the 500 seat Comprehensive School’s Theater when they performed because of the mix of good clean wholesome music.

This album has many of their hits, including these hundred sellers:
  • There’s a bug in Aunt Molly’s soup
  • Mama’s got bees buzzin in her Bonnet.
  • That Ant was Made for Lifting
  • Little Brown Jug of Mountain Shine
The Sunflower Girls disbanded in the early 1990’s over a disagreement about a boy. His name was Justin Rosen, the son of the group’s manager. All the girls fancied him. The jealousy got ugly on the night of February 14, 1992. It was Valentines Day. The Sunflower Girls were performing at the SeaSide Theater in Tamworth on the Tide. At evening’s end, Justin was suppose to surprise the girls and bring them each a bouquet of red roses and a kiss on the cheek. Justin wanted this to be a special occasion for each girl so instead of bringing all the flowers up on stage at the same time he chose to highlight each girl individually. He planned on bringing one bouquet up at time, make the presentation, kiss her cheek and then repeat it over and over until all seven girls had their flowers.

At the appointed time he stepped up on stage with the first bouquet. The girls were surprised and bathed him in dreamy eyes. Each girl desperately hoped the flowers were for her. Justin approached Martha May Moosman, gave her the roses and leaned forward to kiss her cheek. Suddenly, out of nowhere, flew the stool the youngest girl sat on during the performance. The stool knocked Justin off his feet sending him to the floor. Realizing his mistake he attempted to explain but the cat fight was picking up a full head of steam. He couldn’t be heard over the screaming.

To save himself from certain injury he curled up into a ball and rolled off the stage. A moment later the girls were on the floor engaged in a frenzy of hair pulling, kicking, screaming and scratching. A few minutes later the parents had the girls separated, the curtain was drawn and the evening documented in photographs the following day in Tamworth’s Daily Newspaper. It was several months before the girls attempted reconciliation. A year later they broke up forever.

So...... heres to the Sunflower Girls and the beautiful music they created for the short time they were together. I’m hoping you all found happiness and fulfillment . I’m also curious if any of them ended up marrying Justin Rosen.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mother's Day in Cloverdale

The Norland Twins of 21 Spruce Drive, Cloverdale made this wonderful breakfast for their mother Wilma. Dad went to the store to buy bacon and told the twins to wait to make the toast until he got home. Little Lori was impatient and searched the kitchen for something else to use instead of bacon. The twins were ecstatic when they found bacon in the bag where dad gets treats for Buster their dog. If the bacon was good enough for Buster then it would be good enough for Mom. They put it in the microwave for one minute, put it on the plate and the rest is history. A Mother's Day Wilma Norland will never forget.

This is the gift I bought my sister to give my mother. My mother likes to talk to trees. My sister's children tell me she does the same thing. Eerie isn't it? I wonder if it is genetic?
I wonder if the trees talk back? I kinda want to know and I kinda don't. Best to leave it......

Mother Mulligan is the proud mother of eleven catholic children. The Mulligans started the day by going to Mass at St. Bartholomew's. Afterwards, the eleven children gave Mother Mulligan this card and a promise to keep their yaps shut during their traditional Mother's Day lunch at Wimpy Burger in Cloverdale. All eleven Mulligan children honored their word. Mother Mulligan said it was the best Mother's Day gift she's ever received.

Now isn't this the perfect place for a Dunce to buy his mother a Mother's Day gift? Frank Dewy, owner of the 99 cent store, says Mother's Day sales aren't the greatest - thank heaven for that, but you can't fault him for trying?

John Hardy ordered Olivia Hardy to stay in bed so he could fix breakfast and serve her in bed.
That was 8:00 A.M. By 10:00 A.M. Olivia became concerned. No sign of her husband and certainly nothing to eat. She got up to search. One look into the Kitchen nearly sent her to the floor in a dead faint. What had he done? The front door opened and in walked John. He gave up in the Kitchen and drove to McDonalds to purchase 'The Big Breakfast'. They spent the next hour cleaning up his attempt to make eggs, toast and coffee.

The Pennyworths were having a wonderful time on their traditional Mother's Day family outing. Little Franz wanted to play with the birdies. Mother Pennyworth said no. Franz forgot it was Mother's Day and the lecture his dad gave him on being good. Franz broke free. This picture tells the rest of the story. The Pennyworth's outing was interrupted while they searched for the nearest public restroom.